Waiting at the threshold: that in between time

Well, here we are. Spring has sprung and we’re really beginning to look forward to  lighter, warmer days when as restrictions ease, we can begin to get out and about and mix with friends and family once more. 

But before that, Holy Week, as together we’ve been journeying through the events of those last few days in the life of Christ. 

A few years ago, during  an extended retreat, (The ‘Exercises’), I prayed through  that week. This  included  that strange,   time   between Good Friday and Easter, which the  Jesuits call  ‘tomb day.’ *On reflection, it’s struck me that there are some significant  parallels between this  ‘no man’s land’ and our current pandemic situation. Both are ‘liminal’ spaces; a transitional state twixt one place and another. 

Just as everyone caught up in the waiting of those few days was between different phases of being: knowing what was, what had been, but not yet realising what might be, (we have the advantage of knowing how the story ends!), so we, too, are living in a place of  ‘now and the not-yet.’  Here in the U.K. at least, as lockdown begins to ease, we’re poised, peering hopefully through a doorway, roadmap in hand.   What will  the future hold? What might a ‘new normal’ look like?

Whatever lies ahead, I’m trying to hold on to the words of one of my favourite poets, Gerard Manley Hopkins, (Jesuit again!) who said of Christ, Let him Easter in us…

  • The WP gremlin strikes again; he obviously prefers dots to asterixes. I’m also not unmindful of the irony of having Holy Saturday – Tomb Day, on my birthday this year!

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